Being a personal trainer at a Gold’s Gym will be a time period of my life that I will never forget.
The high’s were high, the low’s were low, and it was everything I needed in order to become the next version of myself.
I wouldn’t change a thing about the life I went through and the hardships I faced along the way (some of you know which ones I mean).
The thing is…
It didn’t have to be as hard as it was if I understood something else sooner rather than later.
You see, I was a trainer who was hungry as hell for success.
Where did I go to dine?
Every single educational resource I could.
Podcasts, books, audiobooks, eBook, workshops, courses… you name it, I was on top of it and trying my best to memorize it.
I was a maniac, well, I guess I’m using the word “was” a little loosely there as I’m still totally insane.
But in any case, I always knew that knowledge was my way to success and I was so confident in that thought process that I willingly put myself into extreme debt many times over paying for courses that were multiple thousand dollars just to attend for one weekend.
I knew a lot more stuff which allowed me to have the expertise I needed in order to take on more clientele, so that helped me increase the length of the net I had to capture more prospects and convert them into clients.
But the harsh reality I learned was that in the corporate world you are only safe so long as you’re earning money for your company.
The Real World Truth
You can be the most knowledgeable trainer in your country, but you’re absolutely useless to your employer until you can prove your value as a moneymaker.
I employ a team of employees now to operate the multiple companies I am a part of online so now I can clearly see the otherside of the coin, you know, the “non-trainer” side of the business of fitness.
The reality here is that you are nothing to me until you can earn cash for me.
That’s how it works in the real-world, and the sooner you realize this the sooner you are going to be able to separate yourself from the pack in your gym from your employers viewpoint (and that’s a powerful viewpoint for you in a lot of different ways).
You might not have liked to hear this, you might only want to hear that the next evidence-based certification you do will get you the $250K salary that you’ve been thinking about.
Well, I am here to give you a kind yet rude awakening.
“Nice” people tell you what you want to hear, “kind” people tell you the truth because they want what’s best for you.
I am kindly telling you that if you want to move up the ladder in your organization there are going to have to be times where you can’t just put all your chips into the basket of continuing education.
Of course that’s extremely important, I have written about continuing education a bunch in the past — but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be allocating more time towards doing what you need to do in order to pay for your next course in the first place.
The real key here is that you want to view things from the framework of making money for your employer and not yourself.
He/she will reward you when you are ready to be rewarded. Until then, make money for them and you will guarantee the security and safety of your position — and I can also guarantee you a raise along the way because you increased the budget to allow that to happen.
How To Get A Raise In The Fitness Business
Here are some things that I look for in trainers to determine whether or not they are going to be worth it or not.
- Proof that you can make me money. If you can clearly show me how much money you made for my competitors and you have a plan to generate more revenue for my business (and even more than you did for my competitors) then you have a job with me.
- A willingness to travel far and wide coupled with another willingness to be able to stay away from family and friends for a certain period of time.
One thing that drives me insane when I do speaking tours is some clueless trainer will always say:
“Hey Dan! I LOVE YOUR WORK! When are you coming to **insert stupid city/town no one has ever heard of**”
Listen, you dummy.
You need to be willing to travel if you want to learn the best information, and if you knew anything about how this stuff works you would also understand that if you want me to come to your city you have to gather up interest first in order to make the trip worth it from a business perspective.
If you’re not willing to mildly inconvenience yourself for a massive boost in your career and knowledge base then you will always stay in your stupid city/town that no one has ever heard of.
- Honesty. A big thing I look for that successful trainers all have is unwavering honesty.
Or, to put it another way, they don’t candy-coat their screw ups.
Your employer will find out about them sooner or later, so fess-up early and keep some dignity about yourself, it’s way better than trying to get away with it.
To this point, you should also clearly demonstrate that you have learned from your mistake and that it won’t happen in the organization again.
- Confidence. Winners have a glow about themselves, you just know it when you see it.
They don’t have the defensiveness that a person who lacks confidence has. Instead, they have a confident yet relaxed humility about themselves and you just get the sense that people like to be around these types of people (which is always good for the organization).
I have had people want to be my intern in the past, all I have to do is shuttle a bunch of business that I have worked hard for their way, get on a Skype call with them every week, teach them my systems, and send them all the documents I send to people when I take them on as clients.
I return, I also get to pay them, spend my time with them, and they don’t ever promote me or the process they are going through on any platforms because they love taking all of the glory for stuff they haven’t worked for.
SOUNDS GREAT POTENTIAL INTERN!
Where do I sign up!?!?
This is just a small example of how so many people present “opportunities” to your that are really just opportunities for them.
If you want to get a raise in your facility, it’s very wise to look at the current organizational structure and try to improve it — but make sure you improve it for your employer and no just yourself.
In almost all cases, the reason trainers get into this business is because they love it.
Usually they have been in sports, bodybuilding, or had a personal transformation of themselves which then turned them into loving the health industry and wanting to help others.
This passion for health and fitness leads to an unwavering hunger in wanting to learn more physiology.
But, if you want to make a living and not just a hobby out of this thing — start directing some of that passionate energy into making more money for your employer, and then ultimately for yourself.